SA v Victoria, Sheffield Shield, Adelaide January 27, 2013

South Australia scrape home by a wicket

ESPNcricinfo staff

South Australia 267 and 9 for 191 (Ludeman 49, Boland 3-30) beat Victoria 319 and 136 by 1 wicket

Tim Ludeman steered South Australia to the brink of victory before the opener Sam Raphael struck the winning runs, completing his gutsy return to the crease after retiring hurt earlier in the innings. Raphael had been felled by a James Pattinson bouncer on the third day and he walked out again with the total at 7 for 163, which in a chase of 189 meant both sides had strong claims to victory.

Raphael and Ludeman put on 21 runs and the Redbacks appeared to cruising by the time the score had moved on to 7 for 184, especially with Ludeman well set on 49. However, when he edged to slip off Scott Boland and was followed in the next over by the departure of Chadd Sayers, bowled through the gate by a sharp-turning offbreak from David Hussey, it left South Australia precariously placed.

The No.11, Daniel Worrall, came to the crease with two runs still needed, and while he didn't score any of them, he hung around long enough to allow Raphael to do so as the Redbacks limped over the line for a one-wicket victory. Raphael finished unbeaten on 27 when he struck the winning boundary off Boland, who finished with 3 for 30.

The South Australians had started the day at 2 for 34 and they lost key batsman and first-innings centurion Phillip Hughes for 35, lbw to John Hastings. Boland got rid of Callum Ferguson and Johan Botha from consecutive deliveries to leave the Redbacks wobbling at 5 for 82, before a steadying stand from Ludeman and Travis Head (35) got the chase back on track. Man of the Match Joe Mennie also chipped in with 17.

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  • Luke on January 27, 2013, 21:52 GMT

    One of the best finishes to a match i've witnessed, great to see two players (Ludes and Raph) who have copped a fair bit of negative press win the game. SA will be tested without Hughes who has single handedly made the bulk of the runs in their past two wins against Vic. Questions remain about whether Dan Christian and Tom Cooper are in Berry's best X1, they are certainly in my best SA X1.

  • Peterincanada on January 27, 2013, 19:43 GMT

    @Hyclass Hughes was first dumped after 5 tests and has been under constant pressure ever since. I believe that now he has enjoyed consistent success in the Shield,tests and ODI's the pressure has been somewhat relieved. With confidence, the runs will continue to flow.

  • Peterincanada on January 27, 2013, 17:05 GMT

    @hyclass Hughes can't seem to win. Last year people were complaining he snicks to slips. Now he is lbw or bowled. He is scoring runs and to me that is all that matters. He seems to convert his starts which is really the key to success. He didn't convert his 80's in the SL tests but since then he has 3 tons. He has suffered a lot of psychological pressure in the last few years and now he is in a better mental place I think the runs will continue to flow. I tend to agree with Barnsey4444.

  • Online on January 27, 2013, 16:50 GMT

    @hyclass My theory is that every technique has "blind spots", i.e., certain balls which are harder to play with the given technique. Hughes is a very talented batsman and I believe technique is irrelevant for him. Technique is more important for less talented batsman who need a good technique to ensure that their talents are more focussed on the blind spots of their game. For example, a natural puller of the ball who may be weaker in other suits would wield his technique to help him on his weaknesses other than the pull shot. Hughes didn't score as fast as he does now in 2009 because he had blind spots on the leg-side. I think he could have done well with his technique irrespective in test cricket but I fear that mind games may have affected him given the intense scrutiny of his technique. There's no hiding from his masterful display of batting against a top South Africa attack in Durban. Anyway, he did score 158 earlier in the season so I think we could see big 100's in a year or two.

  • Don on January 27, 2013, 13:09 GMT

    Great to see Pattinson getting through the match without any mishaps. A nice workout for his reintroduction to match play. Let's hope he can gradually build his workload in subsequent games.

  • Phil on January 27, 2013, 12:54 GMT

    @Barnsey444 i agree with you on Hughes, he looks so much better now. Khawaja and Hughes are the future of our batting lineup and I wish both of them all the best for the upcoming Indian series as we will need both of them to be on top of their game. Its exciting times to be a batsman in domestic cricket now and these 2 are certainly the best among them. Shame Ferguson didn't get runs in this game, it would have been very timely, same goes for David Hussey.

  • Brenton on January 27, 2013, 11:54 GMT

    Hyclass, Hughes is a much better batsman than in 2009. Once a batsman plays test cricket coaches study videos to find weaknesses. Hughes has eliminated many of these weaknesses. He still knows how to construct big innings and once he settles into the international routine he will make centuries regularly over a long period. I'm sure of that. He will hit his prime in about 3-4 years!

  • Brenton on January 27, 2013, 11:48 GMT

    Bowlers win matches, but gutsy batsmen save them. Good to see SA showing both for a change.

  • Christopher on January 27, 2013, 10:33 GMT

    Congratulations Sth Australia who need an infusion of quality batsmen to ensure matches like this are less frequent. Ferguson is as unreliable as Klinger and both have seen better days as players. They lack the requisite toughness to make regular solid contributions and have rarely been match winners in their own right. I would consider Klinger close to retirement and given the extent of Ferguson's career, see little reason for significant improvement from here. I wish them every success regardless.Their bowling stocks appear to be improving though in fairness, Victoria almost took the game without any stand-out bowling. Its nice to see Hughes back scoring hundreds more frequently though he still isnt the player he was before England '09. His hundreds arent as big and there are noticeably more LBW and Bowled dismissals to the quicks. I've long considered him the best player of his generation. Whether he goes on to justify that faith is entirely in his hands as there is still work to do

  • Phil on January 27, 2013, 8:45 GMT

    Yes Ludeman is pushing for higher honours, i know its only his first season but he looks very reliable with both bat and gloves.

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